Can you Hear me now?

This month I began learning along with a small group of other prospective volunteers how to help with hospice care. The love and dedication of the woman who is training us has been both an inspiration and example. As a volunteer chaplain and a song leader my ministry at Nursing home has focused on what to say or sing to give hope. This week I was amazed to see just how much hope quiet listening can give. I came away from the orientation sessions with this one quote. I pray it will be a blessing to you as well.

“The quieter we become, the more that we can hear!”.

If you are like me and wish God would speak more clearly, then ask yourself- How quiet has my heart been this week?

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Never Lose Hope

The still unfolding story of yet another deranged man with a gun – this time at a nursing home touched a nerve with me tonight. Whatever the motivation for the violence will soon be lost in another shouting match over 2nd amendment rights and gun control. The three dead employees will soon be forgotten by everyone but God. But in spite of the night of hatred, division and fear that seems to get darker by the hour there is still hope. God has not nor will He ever abandon us. If we cry He is listening. When we lie awake sleepless with anxiety, He stands watch. In the deepest despair He plants a seed of hope. God’s kingdom whether in the life of an individual or a community always starts with the tiniest of seeds. Will you plant your seed of hope with me tonight in prayer that together we might see it grow one day into a mighty tree of faith?

How to Get to Heaven

I am posting today’s video not to impress anyone with my teaching at the nursing home but to impress on anyone willing to go; how simple it is to share the hope of Christ in a few minutes. Jesus gave us a great commission but at nursing home it needs to be short and to the point! Please be patient with the quality of the recording as it was done by one of our recreational aides who volunteered at the last minute to run the camera.

This is a ministry that anyone who is willing can do. Your willingness to press on through difficulties, sometimes frustrating slowness in seeing responses and the sorrow of unexpected farewells can lead to a rich harvest for Jesus Christ. We are now approaching our 24th year in ministry at Allied Skilled nursing home. There are three services each week in the various wards reaching between 70 -80 residents each week. It is all volunteer. I am deeply grateful to the staff who willingly and eagerly encourage people to come each week. I am also thankful for our dedicated group of youth volunteers who help put together a special program at Easter, Christmas and during their Summer Vacation. May God inspire you to realize that you can do this too. The harvest really is ripe and God is calling each of us to labor in the vineyard where He has called us. For more detailed questions please feel free to contact me at revpete51@gmail.com or browse our Youtube archives. You will find help in putting together holiday programs, encouraging singing and serving communion among many other short videos. God bless as you do you best for Him!  If you say yes to God’s call to nursing home ministry then I  ask you what Jesus once asked me, “Would you do it for one?”

 

Devotions for Care Givers

In all things I have shown you that by working hard in this way we must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’” Acts 20:35

This week the head of the volunteer network at our facility said that everything she learned about life she learned from her brother who had been born with Down’s Syndrome. We usually think of people like her brother as the care receivers and we the givers. But in God’s economy we find that often people like her brother are the greatest givers. I also have discovered as a chaplain at a long term care that I have become a member of a community. This community is not based on racial or economic characteristics but on our shared experiences. Our days are not only measured by hours nor is our calendar neatly divided into seasons. One phone call, a doctor’s diagnoses or a night of pain can change what we are facing today. I wrote Reflections of Hope to be a healing balm to help strengthen our faith as we together struggle to love and serve. Our souls sometimes limp through the valley of death but our greatest hope is that He walks with us!

If you are either a care giver or receiver you may find this small book to be a help. The softcover is available now and the E-book releases on the 7th. I have it set up for free lending and for those who purchase the soft cover the E-book will be free. Thank you for following this blog. I will continue to share the highs and lows with you of our community and it is my prayer that together we could learn when to give and when to receive. We know that what ever end of the equation we are on today, everything we have comes from the Lord Jesus!

Reflections of Hope

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